Y’all. Phonemic awareness is so important. I cannot stress this enough.
Phonemic awareness is our ability to hear, identify, and manipulate individual sounds (phonemes for those of you in “the business”). Why does this matter? Because it is the precursor to successful reading and spelling. Phonemic awareness is done completely without letters.
Here are some of the many examples of phonemic awareness activities. Some are more complex than others, and very young children will not be able to do the harder ones.
- Clap out the syllables in a word.
- Count out the sounds in a word (/c/ /a/ /t/ has three sounds).
- I will give you four words, and three of them will rhyme with each other. Tell me the word that doesn’t rhyme.
- Say “bland.” Now say it again with the /l/ sound.
- Say “popcorn.” Now reverse the syllables.
- Which two words have the same ending sound? Rat, rant, cat.